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How do I deal with the insurance company after an accident?

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How do I deal with the insurance company after an accident?

After an accident, an injured person is forced to deal with many things, including pain from injuries, medical appointments and bills, lost work and wages, damaged vehicles - and insurance companies. Regardless of whether the accident was serious or minor, it is inevitable that an insurance adjuster will be involved after an accident.

Here are some suggestions on how to deal with an insurance adjuster:

Contact your own insurance immediately - Your policy likely requires you to cooperate with your own insurance adjuster, whose job it is to investigate your claim, communicate with witnesses and others involved in the crash, review records, and inspect property damage. Provide your adjuster with any photos or information you got at the crash scene.

Review your insurance policy before speaking with an insurance company representative - Make sure you understand your policy including any exclusions and limitations. Get clarification from the adjuster on any aspect you don’t fully understand.

Keep a written log of anything related to your claim - Write down the date, time, name, and topic of all phone calls and written communications with insurance adjusters. This will help provide evidence of what was said and done throughout the insurance claim process.

When dealing with the adjuster for the insurance company of the other party 

Do not exaggerate anything about the claim, your injuries, or your vehicle damage;

Do not accept the insurance company’s expert evaluations of damages without getting an independent estimate;

Don’t authorize the release your medical records to the insurance company - it is safer to collect the and send the records yourself.

Do not give a recorded statement without first speaking with a personal injury attorney.

Do not accept and cash a settlement check or sign a release form without talking with an attorney - Once the check is cashed and the release signed, you will not be able to go back later and re-open the claim.

For some minor accidents that do not involve significant injury, it is possible to handle the insurance claim process alone. For any major injury or fatality accident, it is crucial to find a good personal injury attorney to lead you through the entire process. Since injury attorneys don’t cost anything up front, and only get paid at the end of the claim out of the settlement or verdict funds, there is no reason to avoid getting the legal assistance needed to ensure a fair and full result.

 
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